Sunday, 12 January 2014

Five Faves from My FilmySthan

    Brainers or no-Brainers, Bollywood is our leading source of entertainment , that's assured to be delivered in packets, every Friday round the year! Saturdays are spent dissecting the films and bashing the producers for spending crores on loads of garbage! But often , we come across certain films that simply mesmerise us with their sheer story-telling capability and thought provoking potential, despite not boasting of a jewel-encrusted line-up !! Here are five of my favourites from the recent past, that have managed to capture my imagination:

 1) Shaitaan : Rich friends, erratic lifestyle, booze, drugs ....and a run-over of an innocent person triggered off this cat-&-mouse chase , with relatively unknown faces putting in power-packed performances as vulnerable college-students. That the desperation of youth & lack of experience can bring in catastrophic consequences , was shown in this edge-of-the-seat thriller , with the murky world of terrorism too finding a reference that fitted into the plot. As one by one , the friends met with horrendous experiences, we shuddered to think what lay next. After difference of opinions cropped up among the schemers, and factions amongst them threatened to pull out & reveal the fake kidnapping plot, the events turned too nasty to keep us unflinching. The background score added an eerie touch to the proceedings, with known songs thrown in unrecognisable manners! Shaitaan reminded us once more, how stability at home affected the mental build-up of youngsters, and that money was indeed the root of all evils ! 

2) The LunchBox: those eyes of Irrfan Khan, the brow-mopping in kitchen of Nimrat Kaur , the enthusiastic-but-flawed trainee of Nawazuddin Siddique.....the whole cast put their hearts into the film that flowed , like a clear stream of water down a hillside ! The pace was languid, but that helped us get under the skins of the actors as we felt their excitement,anguish, disgust and disappointments. We all have a soft corner towards 'love-letters'.....they bring back the flavour of our candy floss romance days from our teens. But when two veterans of life engage in sharing 'love' notes , we support their cause....we hope , they let the fresh air of romance blow away the monotony of their lives.
The super portrayal of the upstairs Aunty , who was never seen , but kept on her supply of free advice, plus kitchen goodies by a basket from the window above, was the revelation, that struck a cord within our hearts .As the film drew to a close,I almost could see myself egging on Saajan Fernandes towards his lady-love , who was perilously close to being lost to him forever. 


3) Udaan : a tyrant Dad , a good-for-nothing son , a step brother.....and the uncertainty grasping the mind of an adolescent . Vikramaditya Motwane took us back to the days , when we were a confused lot in reality, but always thought of ourselves as rebels. We were thrilled as Rohan & his friends escaped boarding school to go watch an adult film at a hall, were scared when they were caught and expelled! We shared his frustration at being forced to work , at a place , where he didn't love it . We tried to impart our energy into Rohan so that he could beat his father in the races in which he was challeneged. His uncle was the genial person , we all wished we had. And when step-brother Arjun was befriended, we jubilated at the union! 
Rohan's tears broke our hearts , we felt the Adrenaline surge when he punched his Dad straight in the face and beat him in the sprint as he fled! And slow claps were reserved for the end, when a boarding-bound Arjun was whisked away by Rohan, who promised to ensure a good life for him! Atta boy! 


4) Kahaani : as a guy from Kolkata, I'm rather partial to this one , as Vidya Balan stole the show in this suspense thriller, along with a bevy of Bong actors, ably supporting her with stellar roles! The venom-spewing Nawazuddin Siddique & the blood-curdling smile of Bob Biswas : both became institutions of acting brilliance with their roles. Vidya, putting glamour far behind her, became the Bengali lady with a huge baby bump , who scoured Kolkata's streets intently , taking all of us along with her , in search of her lost husband! We hoped she would find her husband, we wished that she would face the almost unreachable Milan Damji, the prime suspect in a terror attack. We revelled in the glory of Durga Puja, rode the trams with Vidya , smiled at Parambrata's depiction of the 'soft' policeman, got terrified by the audacious Khan of Nawazuddin. As North Kolkata came alive ,through its alleys, and South Kolkata played a pivotal part in the gripping climax, we were left putting together the various pieces of jigsaw in our brains , that fell in place !!


5) Iqbal : when a young Indian guy is talking about Entertainment,how can cricket not be in it? Specially when a film named Iqbal had left us in a lasting feel-good state? Shreyas Talpade , Naseeruddin Shah and director Nagesh Kukoonoor each complemented the other to script a beautiful family movie, that held aloft the spirit of cricket. We loved the enthusiasm of Iqbal's sister, the bubbly village girl who could put us urban guys to shame with her in-depth knowledge of the game! We enjoyed the fact that the story was written from a Bowler's point-of-view , when all of us have upheld Batsmen as the heroes all the time! The eccentric coach of Naseeruddin had us guffawing , his inimitable style of coaching his ward made us feel he's a flawed genius. That Iqbal couldn't communicate with words was a blessing in disguise, as his epic snubs to the corrupt selectors drew our applause. By the time of the predictable ending ,with Iqbal as an Indian team pacer, the simple film had ensured that its stupendous "Aashayein Khile Dil ki...." reverberated in our minds for days to come! 

This post is a part of the Miss Lovely Activity in association with BlogAdda
Miss Lovely, an off-beat film directed by Ashim Ahluwalia is set in the lower depths of Bombay’s “C” grade film industry. It follows the devastating story of two brothers who produce sex horror films in the mid – 1980s. A sordid tale of betrayal and doomed love, the film dives into the lower depths of the Bollywood underground, an audacious cinema with baroque cinemascope compositions, lurid art direction, wild background soundtracks, and gut-wrenching melodrama. Miss Lovely is scheduled for commercial release on 17 January 2014.

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